Croatia Int’l Quran Competition Kicks Off in Zagreb

TEHRAN (IQNA) – The first international Quran competition of Croatia was inaugurated in a ceremony in the capital, Zagreb, on Thursday night.
The ceremony, hosted at the Islamic Center of Zagreb (above) began with recitation of verses from the Holy Quran by prominent Iranian Quranic figure and reciter Ahmad Abolqassemi, who will serve as a member of the competition’s panel of judges.
In previous years, the contest used to be held at the regional level for contenders from the countries of the Balkan region and it is the first time it is organized internationally.
Quran reciters and memorizers from 45 countries are participiating in the Quranic event.
Hadi Movahed Amin represents Iran in the recitation category while Reza Nezhad Tabrizi will compete for the country in memorization of the entire Quran.
The contest marks the 100th year anniversary of the recognition of Islam in Croatia’s constitution as equal to other religions.
Croatia is an Eastern European country with a population of around five million.
It declared its independence during the breakup of Yugoslavia in 1991 and was internationally recognized in January 1992.
Roman Catholics represent 86 percent of Croatia’s population, followed by Orthodox Christians at five percent and Muslims at two percent.
On April 27, 1916, the Croatian-Slovenian province of the then Austro-Hungarian Empire held a parliamentary session in which Islam was recognized as equal to Roman Catholicism and Orthodoxy.